I would like to address the person who stole money and documents (that were completely random to them) out of my purse at the Downtown Santa Cruz Farmer’s Market on Wednesday, August 11. Certainly, it was my fault for being negligent and trusting. The vendors tend to watch out for each other, and up to this point I had been enjoying the “high” of so many nice, friendly, honest patrons as well. I probably left my purse behind my table for a few minutes and gave you plenty of opportunity to steal from me.
Let’s set aside the fact that my “booth” has been a series of TV trays covered by felt. Let’s also set aside the fact that I work my butt off to replace the jewelry I sell (at very low prices by the way) every week. The reason I sell my jewelry at the Farmer’s Market is that I’m poor and need the money. I may not be as poor as you are, but I bite my nails at the first of the month along with just about everybody else in Santa Cruz. In addition, some of the papers and business cards you stole when you reached into my purse were of no importance to you, but their loss to me has had serious and severe consequences.
I could speculate on your motivation and make a snarky drug comment, but everybody knows a desperate, hungry person these days. As any news source will tell you, things are tough all over. What I do know is that your small, temporary solution to what is probably a long-term problem has now become my very big problem. It’s a temporary problem, I’ll admit, but it’s a problem you gave me and one I feel I neither earned nor deserved.
If you knew me, you would know that there is hardly a better friend of the poor, mentally ill, and/or homeless than myself. I count more than a few of each of those populations as personal friends. I give clothes, time, and a couple of couches in my house during the Winter to folks in need. Perhaps you’re not a member of any of those populations anyway. Perhaps you’re an addict, or perhaps you’re just a greedy scumbag. In any event, you’re now a thief. I’m far from a saint, and frankly, I’ve stolen myself in the far past. But even at the very lowest points in my life, I would never, ever, steal from an obviously not-rich person who was trying to earn money selling stuff they make.
Whoever you are, you got my dough, threw the papers away, and nuts to me. My bad. I just wanted to let you know that there are consequences to your actions. For one thing, that’s the last time you’re going to have the opportunity to steal from me, and I’m going to make damn sure you won’t have that opportunity with anyone else who sells at the Farmer’s Market either. You’ve also inspired me to become more active than I’ve ever been to ensure that this becomes the kind of community where stuff like this simply doesn’t happen.
In short, I’m going to do everything in my power to make your short term solution your very big problem.